Recently asked questions relating to Waterbeach leasehold conveyancing
Looking forward to exchange soon on a garden flat in Waterbeach. Conveyancing lawyers inform me that they will have a report out to me next week. What should I be looking out for?
The report on title for your leasehold conveyancing in Waterbeach should include some of the following:
- You should receive a copy of the lease
I've recently bought a leasehold flat in Waterbeach. Do I have any liability for service charges relating to a period prior to completion of my purchase?
In a situation where the service charge has already been demanded from the previous owner and they have not paid you would not usually be personally liable for the arrears. However, your landlord may still be able to take action to forfeit the lease. It is an essential part of leasehold conveyancing for your conveyancer to ensure to have an up to date clear service charge receipt before completion of your purchase. If you have a mortgage this is likely to be a requirement of your lender.
If you purchase part way through an accounting year you may be liable for charges not yet demanded even if they relate to a period prior to your purchase. In such circumstances your conveyancer would normally arrange for the seller to set aside some money to cover their part of the period (usually called a service charge retention).
I work for a long established estate agent office in Waterbeach where we have witnessed a number of leasehold sales jeopardised due to leases having less than 80 years remaining. I have been given conflicting advice from local Waterbeach conveyancing firms. Could you clarify whether the owner of a flat can start the lease extension formalities for the buyer?
As long as the seller has owned the lease for at least 2 years it is possible, to serve a Section 42 notice to kick-start the lease extension process and assign the benefit of the notice to the purchaser. This means that the proposed purchaser need not have to sit tight for 2 years for a lease extension. Both sets of lawyers will agree to form of assignment. The assignment needs to be completed before, or simultaneously with completion of the sale.
An alternative approach is to agree the lease extension with the freeholder either before or after the sale. If you are informally negotiating there are no rules and so you cannot insist on the landlord agreeing to grant an extension or transferring the benefit of an agreement to the purchaser.
Do you have any top tips for leasehold conveyancing in Waterbeach from the perspective of expediting the sale process?
- Much of the delay in leasehold conveyancing in Waterbeach can be bypassed where you appoint lawyers the minute you market your property and request that they start to collate the leasehold documentation needed by the buyers representatives.
- The majority landlords or managing agents in Waterbeach charge for supplying management packs for a leasehold premises. You or your lawyers should find out the fee that they propose to charge. The management information sought on or before finding a buyer, thus accelerating the process. The typical amount of time it takes to receive management information is three weeks. It is the most usual cause of delay in leasehold conveyancing in Waterbeach.
What makes a Waterbeach lease unacceptable for security purposes?
Leasehold conveyancing in Waterbeach is not unique. All leases is drafted differently and drafting errors can sometimes mean that certain clauses are missing. For example, if your lease is missing any of the following, it could be defective:
- Repairing obligations to or maintain elements of the building
- A duty to insure the building
- Clauses dealing with recovering service charges for expenditure on the building or common parts.
- Maintenance charge proportions which don’t add up to the correct percentage
A defective lease will likely cause problems when trying to sell a property primarily because it impacts on the ability to obtain a mortgage on the property. Accord Mortgages Ltd, Virgin Money, and Aldermore all have very detailed requirements when it comes to what is expected in a lease. If a mortgage lender believes that the lease is problematic they may refuse to provide security, obliging the buyer to withdraw.
Waterbeach Leasehold Conveyancing - Sample of Questions you should consider before buying
Most Waterbeach leasehold properties will have a service bill for the upkeep of the building invoiced by the landlord. If you purchase the apartment you will have to pay this liability, normally periodically during the year. This may be anything from a couple of hundred pounds to thousands of pounds for buildings with lifts and large communal areas. There will also be a ground rent to be met annual, this is usually not a exorbitant figure, say around £50-£100 but you should to enquire it because occasionally it could be many hundreds of pounds.
If a Waterbeach lease has fewer than 80 years it will affect the value of the flat. Check with your lender that they are content with residual term of the lease. A short lease means that you will almost definitely have to extend the lease sooner rather than later and it is worth discovering how much this would cost. Remember, in most cases you would need to own the residence for a couple of years in order to be entitled to exercise a lease extension.
Are there any major works in the planning that could increase the maintenance costs?